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Who Will Join Microsoft in the Portal Wars? 132

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the choosing-sides dept.
madman writes "In the light of the recent changes in the search war, like the Google/Dell partnership and eBay/Yahoo! alliance, Microsoft is facing a complicated question: Who are they going to ally with? Will they try to face the competition alone?"
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Who Will Join Microsoft in the Portal Wars?

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  • Which side? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ItsIllak (95786) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:00PM (#15416095) Homepage
    How about allying with someone who's also got something virtual to deliver? Obviously MS could easily just ally with another one of it's arms - for mob appeal they could buy up Flikr, MySpace or YouTube? That gives them their own content - hence a reason to come along, something new and interesting to search... And before you say it, yes there's a lot of dross in those sites, but there are also hidden gems...

    See: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YGuBx6Xj-PE [youtube.com]
  • Core values. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by geoff lane (93738) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:01PM (#15416100)
    Wouldn't it make sense for MS to pay more attention to its core products before it goes hunting? There is not a lot of point in catching a big beast when the log cabin is burning down.
  • Re:Which side? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:07PM (#15416122)
    Seeing as how both Flickr and MySpace were semi-recently acquired by other huge companies, that leaves only YouTube. I guarantee that if MS bought YouTube, they'd have this brilliant idea and start charging people to put their content up there. If there's one thing that MS repeatedly shows that it doesn't understand, it's how other companies come out of nowhere and become successful at doing what they do.
  • Not trolling (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mostly a lurker (634878) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:14PM (#15416144)
    I think this is where Microsoft's prior behaviour comes back to haunt them. When Microsoft partners with anyone, it is (from their viewpoint) a short term marriage of convenience to be discarded the moment they think they can make a buck by shafting their "partner". If I had a valuable Internet property, the last thing I would consider is letting Microsoft get its fingers on it. You may think you have good lawyers, but Microsoft has played the game too long.
  • by GigsVT (208848) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:15PM (#15416145) Journal
    Doesn't anyonre remember the last portal wars?

    They were won by a company that didn't provide a portal, just a simple search service that let people find what they want.

    People don't want a "portal"... they just want to find what they are looking for quickly.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:26PM (#15416180)
    Little dirty secret is Microsoft is a large share holder of InterActive Corp (IAC)

    IAC owns www.ask.com .. match.com.. lendingtree.com .. home shopping network ...
  • by coop535 (813230) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:31PM (#15416201)
    For starters (and off the top of my head): Intel, IBM, Apple, Sun, Nvidia, Dell. I would include SCO, but they're touch and go.
  • by kkiller (945601) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:42PM (#15416238)
    I remember portals in the late 90s, and the fuss and bother firms made over what was meant to be the cash-cow of the future. Much was made about Netscape's Netcenter site, which is still operating [netscape.com], tho' I suspect with far fewer visitors.

    What I want to know is... who uses these damn sites? If portals are so important as a source of revenue, then why did Google - who's original site was stripped of the over-complicated design which marked sites like Yahoo!, MSN and excite - become a dominant market player? Could it be - shock - users don't want to see everything piled into one place and are intelligent enough to get services from different websites? eBay for auctions, BBC/CNN/whoever for news, Google for their search. I certainly never liked those kind of sites and I never heard anyone else who did - except of course, the corporations which ran them.

  • by DarthChris (960471) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @12:51PM (#15416265)
    ...who doesn't actually care?

    As long as there is good competition, and I can get decent products/services because of it, I honestly don't care. I am sure plenty of you will disagree, but that's just my take on it.
  • Blame the editor (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rastakid (648791) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @01:15PM (#15416355) Homepage Journal
    You should blame the editor instead: the submitter submitted his story probably before the article you refer to was posted and it's always to the editors to fix this kind of things.

    I hate it the Slashdot editors don't even care to read their own frontpage!
  • by Znork (31774) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @01:30PM (#15416437)
    Without a doubt. Yet, instead of paying out the money they dont know what to do with in dividends or doing stock buybacks, like so many others they try to pretend they're better than their shareholders at deciding what the shareholders money should be invested in.

    It's a classic, probably a psychological control issue for boards, they're have a compulsive need to expand until they collapse into unprofitability.
  • by Trelane (16124) on Saturday May 27, 2006 @01:52PM (#15416549) Journal
    And the kicker, they've so far lost a truckload of money.
    If "they" is the XBox division, yes. However, Microsoft itself continues to make money hand over fist via the Two Towers: Windows and Office, to the tune of several billion profit per quarter (3-4 bn USD last I saw). Thus, they can afford to lose many truckloads of money on the XBox, so long as their Two Towers stand.

    This subsidized loss in the XBox division is very much worth it, since the XBox is one (fairly important) arm of their overall strategy for increasing revenue via media services. XBox is not merely a gaming console, but is being positioned as a gateway to media services on Windows/Microsoft software. With Microsoft DRM acceptance, they are unusually well-positioned for providing end-to-end near-future media services (e.g. the increasing acceptance of Microsoft's IPTV platform + Windows MCE + Windows + XBox + PocketPC/Smartphone).

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